Sorry for the terrible pun. Couldn’t help myself.
Can’t honestly say I was blown away at the time. I’d ordered coffee and it came in a teeny cup, whereas the biscotti was genuinely the length of my forearm. Good start (quantity is the way to my heart). And yes, I get that it’s supposed to be dunked in the coffee to soften the concrete hard texture. But by the time I’d finished my coffee I was still looking at the vast majority of the biscuit, wondering whether my teeth were up to the challenge or chewing through it.
Regardless, it was sweet and slightly nutty, and gorgeous in the coffee. So making it at home where the tea/coffee supply is unlimited seemed very sensible.
So I got cracking.
Initially I’d assumed biscotti was an almond flour based biscuit like ameretti. But the majority of the recipes I checked out had no almond flour at all, just plain, with some chopped nuts through in.
Determined, I found a recipe with almond flour (because I’d gone and bought some, and wasn’t going to let the fact it’s not commonly used stop me).
As I’m not a fan of almond essence (marzipan in peeled off any cake with more than mild disgust), I decided to use a couple of spoonfuls of hazelnut toffee flavoured coffee syrup. A complete revelation. Coupled with the dark chocolate the biscuits were slathered in, and dunked in coffee, these tasted a bit like Nutella. All grown up. Elegant and dangerously moreish.
The recipe is a Delia Smith one, that I adapted slightly. I left out the nuts, simply because I didn’t have any to hand. But next time I bake them I’m going to add 50g of chopped, toasted hazelnuts/ I would strongly urge you to do the same.
Here’s the original- http://www.deliaonline.com/recipes/cuisine/european/italian/almond-biscotti.html
Dark chocolate hazelnut biscotti
120g plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
25g ground almonds
75g caster sugar
1 large egg
2-3tbsp hazelnut coffee syrup
100g dark chocolate melted
Approx 20g ground almonds
1. Preheat over to 150C. Place the flour, baking powder, almonds and caster sugar into a bowl (I used the measuring bowl from the scales to save on washing up). Mix all together, making sure you squish out any lumps in the almond flour/ plain flour with the back of your spoon.
2. Make a well in the middle of the mixture and crack your egg in. With a fork, whisk the egg lightly until the yolk and white are just amalgamated. Then started bringing the flour into the centre and mixing with the egg until everything is incorporated. It’ll be quite bitty at this point, so use your hands to bring it together into a ball of dough.
3. Lay on a floured surface and roll into a sausage shape, about 30cm long. Place on a non stick sheet (or if you don’t have one like me, place on lightly floured tin-foil). Squish the log down slightly so it flattens out a bit and pop in the oven for 25-30 minutes.
4. Take out the cooked log and cut along in slightly diagonal slices.The end bits are useless and therefore a cooks treat. Allow these to cool, the pop back in the oven for another 25-30 minutes until they’re a pale golden brown. While they’re cooking melted the dark chocolate in a small saucepan fitted over simmering water.
5. Dunk your cooked biscotti into the chocolate, sprinkle some almond flour crumbs over the chocolate and allow to cool for 1-2 hours.
Note- decreasing the flour to 110g, adding 15g of cocoa powder and upping the syrup to 4 tbsps would give you delicious dark chocolate biscotti. I’d dip them in white chocolate for some contrasting sweetness.